Spirits Are High in Godspell Performance

Spirits Are High in Godspell Performance

GodspellTalented students at Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School captivated the audience with their performance of “Godspell”

 Presented by the Fine and Performing Arts Department, students at Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School demonstrated their theatrical talents when they brought to the stage the exuberant and colorful musical production of “Godspell.”

Set in modern day New York City, “Godspell,” created by John-Michael Tebelak, follows a group of people who help the character “Jesus Christ” tell different parables by using a wide variety of comedic games and storytelling techniques. Composed by Stephen Schwartz, the musical displays an eclectic blend of songs ranging in style from pop to vaudeville is employed as the story of Jesus’s life dances across the stage. In the end, Jesus’s messages of kindness, tolerance and love are vibrantly brought to life.

The musical was directed by Gina Occhiogrosso and included support from Assistant Director Michelle Budion, Choreographer Sylvia Walsh and many other skilled individuals. The cumulated efforts of faculty, staff and students resulted in an exceptional musical performance.

“The students had a great time dong the show,” said Occhiogrosso. “It turned out to be a blast for all of us and we were really excited to put the show on for community.”


Shamrocks for Patients

1Just in time for St. Patrick’s Day, members of the Copiague Middle School Student Council created positive messages of hope on shamrocks to be delivered local hospital patients.

“We hope these special messages will bring some cheer to local patients,” said co-adviser Stephanie Colagiacomo.

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Copiague Creativity Featured in Kidsday

KidsdaySixth-grade students at Copiague Middle School recently had their articles and artwork featured in six editions of Kidsday.

Twenty-four sixth-grade students in Paul Harvey’s English class at Copiague Middle School recently had their articles and artwork featured in six editions of Newsday’s “Kidsday” section from March 7-12.
For the assignment, students worked individually or in groups to develop articles that would be published in the newspaper. To assist with the writing process, Kidsday representative Patrick Mulooly visited the sixth-graders to brainstorm topic ideas.

A few weeks later, Mulooly paid another visit to help students revise, add details and create artwork that accompanied their articles. Along with the ability to proudly boast their published work, students received special Newsday T-shirts for their creative contributions to Kidsday.

The district extends its congratulations the following sixth-graders for their published articles in Kidsday.


Saturday, March 7

Pi Day – Nicholas Houlder and Olivia Healy


Sunday, March 8

Ricky Gervais Interview – Gabriella Rivas, Ty McKenzie, Olivia Healy and Nicholas Houlder

Stacking – Ty McKenzie

Builders Club – Alexa Heckman

Poll TV family – Sarah Manzanarez, Amy Mendez and Zuri Milliner

Bracelets – Katherine Canela, Jayleen Garcia

Book Review Jupiter – Joshua Vaquerano

Puzzles – Joshua Georges, Makhi Harris and ArdentisJacquez

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Students Prevail at DECA State Competition DECA+StatesDECA States: Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School students received top titles at the DECA State Competition

Students at Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School recently travelled north with their advisor Louise Curci to compete in the Distributive Education Clubs of America State Competition held March 3-6 in Rochester, New York.

Students competed in a variety of business related categories against more than 2,000 regional winners from across New York State.

The district proudly boasts eight high school students who received top place medals and trophies at the prestigious competition.

 First Place

Victoria Kammer – Whole Selling

 Third Place

Brittney Gordon – Broadcast Advertising

Nicolette Vasseur – Marketing Decision Making

 Fourth Place

Jade Dickerson – Job Interview

 Top Ten Finalists

William Hernandez – Business Marketing

Ashley Hudson – Marketing

Marcus Weeks – Public Speaking

Lyndsey Wilson – Marketing Human Resources

Copiague Announces Class of 2015 Top TenTop_Ten

From left: (sitting) Nicolette Vasseur, William Hernandez, Natalie Korba, Melanie Barreiro and Thomas Clark; (standing) Assistant Principal Bradley Reminick, Gabriela Rivera, Michael Hararah, Kristen Stedman, Ivette Fuentes, Christopher Dundon and Principal Jeanette Altruda.

Years of hard work have paid off for Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School seniors Natalie Korba and Melanie Barreiro, as they were named valedictorian and salutatorian, respectively, of the Class of 2015.

With a weighted GPA of 103.264, Korbahas earned the distinction of being named valedictorian of the Class of 2014. Throughout her academic career in Copiague, Korbahas excelled academically. Taking multiple Advanced Placement courses, including her current course load of five APs, Korba has been named an AP Scholar with Distinction by the College Board. Heavily involved in her school community,she has held the title of class president all four years of high school and currently serves as co-president of science Olympiad, vice president of the National Honor Society and madrigal choir and secretary of the Tri-M Music Honor Society. Korba is also a scholar-athlete for the cheerleading squad and actively involved in her local church.

With a weighted GPA of 102.562, Barreiroranks second in her class of 328. Having taken multiple AP courses, including Spanish language and economics, Barreirohas been recognized by the College Board as an AP Scholar with Distinction. In addition to her academic success, Barreiro is a member of the National Honor Society, co-captain of the varsity gymnastics team, and involved with the drama club, key club, madrigal choir and Treehuggerz club.

The Copiague School District congratulates theentire Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School Class of 2015 Top 10:

  • Natalie Korba, Valedictorian

  • Melanie Barreiro, Salutatorian

  • William Hernandez, Third

  • Nicolette Vasseur, Fourth

  • Thomas Clark, Fifth

  • Kristen Stedman, Sixth

  • Ivette Fuentes, Seventh

  • Michael Hararah, Eighth

  • Christopher Dundon, Ninth

  • Gabriela Rivera, Tenth







Sensational String Program

D'AddarioCopiague Deauville Gardens East and Deauville Gardens West students with D’Addario instructor during their after-school cello lesson

Given the opportunity to further explore their music education, students in Copiague’s Deauville Gardens East and Deauville Gardens West elementary schools participate in the Free Lesson Program provided at no cost to the district by the D’Addario Foundation, a non-profit organized that offers music instruction to children in underserved areas throughout the world.

While the district does not have a formal string program, the in-depth after-school program, based on the renowned El Sistema model and began during the 2013-14 school year, provides more than 30 students with the opportunity to select an instrument and receive music instruction for two hours a day, three days a week. For the 2014-15 school year, the enthusiastic fourth-grade students continue to pursue music education and develop upon their skills acquired in the program last year.

Led by passionate music educators from local colleges, the Copiague students participate in viola, cello and violin lessons, learning the fundamentals of playing a string instrument. To enhance their musical experience, the foundation recently provided transportation for students and their families to New York City where they took a master class with members of the New York Philharmonic.

With the success at Deauville Gardens East and Deauville Gardens West, the Free Lesson Program is set to expand and provide the same opportunity to third-grade students at Susan E. Wiley and Great Neck Road elementary schools.

“With the help of trained music educators, the D’Addario program has allowed Copiague students to further explore their interest in music education,” said Copiague School District Coordinator of Fine Arts Jennifer Pierre-Louis. “The program has enhanced the after-school opportunities at the elementary level and we look forward to expanding the program to other elementary students in the district.”


 Long Island Dance Force

Copiague Students Honored for Creativity by Fire Department

Fire_AwardA student from Deauville Gardens West Elementary School is presented with a medal by Superintendent of Schools Charles A. Leuing during the Copiague Fire Department’s annual fire safety essay and poster contest awards ceremony.

Every October, in recognition of National Fire safety Month, elementary students in the Copiague School District participate in the Copiague Fire Department’s annual essay and poster contest. Following the theme, “Working Smoke Detectors Save Lives,” students in k-2 drew posters depicting the theme, while third, forth and fifth graders wrote essays.

On Nov. 6, Board of Education members, Superintendent of Schools Charles A. Leunig, Associate superintendent Dr. Kathleen Bannon and elementary school principals and assistant principals gathered at the fire department for an awards ceremony honoring student participants and winners of the contest. During the ceremony, members of the fire department and school administration presented the students with medals for their award-winning work.


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The Didgeridoo Down Under

SEW_DidgeridooStudents at Susan E. Wiley Elementary School participate in the “edu-tainment” show The Didgeridoo Down Under.

Combining music, culture, science, literacy development, comedy and lessons on character building and anti-bullying, students at Susan E. Wiley Elementary School in Copiague welcomed Tanya Gerard and Rob Thomas and their “edu-tainment” show, The Didgeridoo Down Under.

The interactive show used student participation and the musical instrument the didgeridoo, usually a hollowed-out tree trunk or branch, has been played by Aboriginal Australians for at least 1,500 years and is known for its otherworldly sound to entertain the students and reinforce the important lessons of character and kindness.


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Campbells Kickboxing

Local Veterans Honored at Copiague Ceremony

GNR_Veterans_1Great Neck Road Elementary School fifth-grader Anne Mahnken and her sister, kindergartner Ruth Mahnken welcomed family friend Staff Sgt. Eamonn McDonough to the school’s annual Veterans Day Breakfast on Nov. 7

In recognition of Veterans Day, students and staff at Copiague’s Great Neck Road Elementary School hosted its annual Veterans Day breakfast to honor local heroes for their sacrifices.

The staff and students invited members of the local VFW, as well as relatives of students who have served or are currently serving in the armed forces, to a breakfast celebration. The attendees enjoyed musical performances and a brief history of the different branches of the military.

As a special touch, students gave a presentation on America’s White Table, which is a table set in many mess halls as a symbol for and remembrance of service members fallen, missing or held captive in the line of duty. It is the table where no one will ever sit.

“We feel it is important we continue this tradition so we can honor the brave men and women who served in our armed forces,” said Principal Joseph Agosta.

GNR_Veterans_2Veterans2: Kindergarten students at Great Neck Road Elementary School sang patriotic songs for the local heroes who attended the school’s annual Veterans Day Breakfast on Nov. 7
GNR_Veterans_3In recognition of Veterans Day, students and staff at Copiague’s Great Neck Road Elementary School hosted its annual Veterans Day breakfast to honor local heroes for their sacrifices.


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